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Group Portrait: 1905

Washington, D.C., circa 1905. "Family Group." Any members of the Group family still out there? Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.

Washington, D.C., circa 1905. "Family Group." Any members of the Group family still out there? Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.


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Pearls tell the story

I think the woman holding the baby is married, because she is wearing pearls. Most women got pearls for a wedding gift from their mothers. Also noteworthy is that the little girl up front seems to be sporting a slight shiner. Heck, there's one in every family portrait!

Three Generations

I tend to agree with Anonymous ("First Grandchild") that there are three generations of family in this view. The three in the front row are siblings. The mother of those is between her parents and their father is in the back row, with the suit. (Or it could be reversed that the man is the son, and the mother is the in-law in this photo). The older couple only have 5 or 6 children.

What I can't decide is which generation the far right girl with the bow in her hair belongs to. Is she the oldest grandchild or the youngest aunt? The center figure doesn't look old enough to have given birth to her. But she doesn't look like the other people to me, leaving me to wonder if these are brothers and sisters of both of the people I am calling the younger parents, with only one set of grandparents in the photo (perhaps because only two of the couple's parents were alive).

One more, please.

My thinking is that they were not done when the picture was taken. Probably added one or two more before exhaustion took over. But hey, if I could afford more I'd have more too.

First Grandchild

Gee, uh, I read the group a bit differently. The new baby is not in the lap of the oldest woman there, who is the mother of most of the children. It's in the lap of her married daughter, whose fine young husband stands behind her, and she and the baby are flanked by the proud grandparents and her sisters and brothers. The family resemblances are indeed strong throughout the group, except for the handsome man in the suit, the young mother's husband. Then there's the boy in the Norfolk jacket on his right, who has a very different mouth than anyone else in the photo. But I still think he's a brother to the main group. He has his mother's eyes and ears.

The Beehive State

To be honest, here in Utah you still see tons of families who look just like this and aren't dressed much differently either. They'd attract no attention whatsoever walking down any street in SLC after Sunday services let out.

Bad mix for a farmer

Papa was probably not a farmer since he appears perfectly content with the lopsided mix. A farmer would have hoped for more hands to help him, not more mouths to feed. Mama, on the other hand, had all the help she needed to run this large household. My mom, born 1901, was No. 6 of nine (three boys) and really thought of one of her older sisters as her caregiver. All perfectly normal for the times.

Thanks for this one -- it reminds me of old family photos.

Nice Family

My guess of ages, l to r is: 15, 19, 50, 8, 16, 17, 1, 21, 45, 20, 10, 18. Dad probably got married at age 29 and has been busy since. There's really no joke here. Big families were the norm. Mom and Dad are obviously proud, and they have every reason to be. Everyone is nicely dressed and they all look boringly normal.


Looks like Dad, Mom and 10 kids to me.

Family Resemblance

Fascinating to see how the maternal and paternal features are spread about here. Getting the laundry ready for this pic must have taken a long time!

Must be...

...the 1905 Planned Parenthood poster!

Cheaper by the Dozen

He does look like Clifton Webb!

These folks needed a hobby

Mind you, maybe this shows that they had one!

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